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An epic mashup of Star Wars and the movies that inspired it

C-3PO, Chewbacca, George Lucas, Carrie Fisher, and Mark Hamill in 1997.
C-3PO, Chewbacca, George Lucas, Carrie Fisher, and Mark Hamill in 1997.
Photo by Ron Galella, Ltd./WireImage
Dylan Matthews is a senior correspondent and head writer for Vox's Future Perfect section and has worked at Vox since 2014. He is particularly interested in global health and pandemic prevention, anti-poverty efforts, economic policy and theory, and conflicts about the right way to do philanthropy.

The "mash up popular movies with prior movies that inspired them" genre has been around at least since Kirby Ferguson's "Everything is a Remix" series, but Michael Heilemann's video "Kitbashed," which aims to intermingle Star Wars: A New Hope with clips of everything from Flash Gordon to the soundtrack to Kings Row, is perhaps the most ambitious entrant I've seen to date:

Star Wars: Kitbashed from Michael Heilemann on Vimeo.

Heilemann is clear that the montage doesn't, and can't, include everything that might have inspired George Lucas. The film is part of a book project, and the eventual e-book will be able to chronicle source material that's harder to interpolate into a mashup video. He chose to do a full movie-length video rather than a shorter, Ferguson-esque one highlighting only similarities with past films to ensure he didn't diminish Lucas' contributions, or portray the film as simply the sum of its influences. "I could have made a super-fast cut of the Battle of Yavin, but above all it wouldn't show you where I don't believe it used inspiration, only where it did," he writes, "and secondly I couldn't bring myself to cut down that sequence because it remains to this day one of the greatest pieces of filmmaking ever."

Hat-tip to Digg.